US developers of brain performance monitoring services, RC21X, has developed and released a new mHealth app that gives users objective information on their brain performance through playing a series of video games.
The app, called Roberto, is essentially a six minute brain health check-up that provides trending reports that can be shared with family members, physicians, coaches, trainers and more.
“Brain health is a growing concern, with an increased medical focus on both concussions in sports as well as dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease among baby boomers,” said RC21X CEO, Clarence Carlos.
“Until recently, wellness programmes have largely ignored the brain. Armed with data from Roberto, consumers can make lifestyle adjustments that will positively affect their brain health, such as exercise, nutrition and socialisation,” continued Carlos.
The Roberto app is based on RC21X’s desktop monitoring platform and allows users play a series of video games that stress different parts of the brain.
Both RC21X and Roberto are web-based versions of pen-and-paper tests that have been used for decades to monitor neurocognitive and neuro-motor performance.
Each session produces a unique profile—a set of scores that provides objective data on brain performance. Users can monitor the effects of those changes in real-time, allowing the opportunity to have more meaningful conversations with healthcare providers if their performance shows a downward trend.
“With this app we have the potential to provide access to anyone with a smartphone — and to educate people about the care they need earlier and more cost-effectively,” said Carlos.
The company suggests a three-step approach to using the app. First, users practice playing two sessions to get a feel for the modules. Then they establish their “normal range” by playing four game sessions. This creates the users’ Brain Performance Profile—objective data about their personal performance rather than a comparison to similar population groups.
As users continue to take Roberto sessions they can spot trends and be proactive in their brain health. They can also monitor the effects of lifestyle changes like exercise programs, diets and new medications.
RC21X is actively looking to partner with organisations that are engaged in promoting brain health. “We want to make this app available for free to get it into as many hands as possible,” said Carlos.
“We’re talking to healthcare providers, school districts, youth sports organisations and are looking to make some announcements in the near future. Our goal is to make 2017 the Year of Brain Health and think the Roberto app can play an important role in making that happen.”